NFL superstar Lamar Jackson is hailed on Australian mount Daniel Faalele for playing a pivotal role in victory despite rookie status: ‘He was just starting to dominate’
- Daniel Faalele made his NFL debut in week 2 loss to Miami
- Aussie rookie was back in the spotlight against New England on Sunday
- He replaced the injured Patrick Mekari and helped Baltimore to a 37-26 . win
- Faalele was impressive in taking the left, a position he had never played in before
Daniel Faalele is the latest Aussie to make a splash in the NFL, delivering a dominating performance that sent Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson flooding with praise on Sunday.
The giant rookie made his NFL debut in Ravens’ 42-38 defeat to Miami in Week 2, but was thrown in the deep end against New England on Sunday in Foxborough.
After Patrick Mekari went down injured early in the game, Faalele rejoined fellow rookie Tyler Linderbaum for Baltimore.
Daniel Faalele delivered a dominant performance as the Ravens defeated New England 37-26
The Patriots immediately targeted the Aussie, with Deatrich Wise on the defensive sacking Jackson twice as the Ravens rearranged offensive line struggled to find his feet.
Gradually, however, the rookie grew in the game and the Ravens took a 37-26 victory, putting them at the top of the AFC North along with the 2-1 Cleveland Browns.
Well protected by Faalele, Jackson completed 18 of his 29 passes for 218 yards and four touchdowns, adding 107 rushing yards and one score on the ground.
And the 2019 NFL MVP was full of praise for the Australian rookie.
Lamar Jackson praised the Aussie rookie after an impressive performance
Well protected by Faalele, Jackson completed 18 of his 29 passes for 218 yards and four touchdowns, adding 107 rushing yards and one rushing touchdown
“He was just starting to dominate like he did in college,” Jackson told ESPN.
‘I didn’t doubt him at all. None of us did. It [the win] was for Pat [Mekari]. […] soff to Faalele because he has become a major.’
Faalele’s performance was all the more impressive because it put it in a different position than the one he played in during his college career at the University of Minnesota.
The Australian, who is officially listed as the NFL’s greatest player at 174kg, played 1,500 right-stackle snaps for the Golden Gophers, but was asked to fill in for left-stackle on Sunday.
Faalele played 90 percent of Ravens’ offensive snaps in a position he’d never played before
Faalele played 54 snaps — 90 percent of the Ravens’ offensive snaps — at Foxborough.
He [Faalele] was just getting used to the game,” Jackson added.
“He didn’t expect to just go in there and play the left tackle for someone else.
“He got in and started executing, got his feet wet, got out and started doing what he was doing.”
Ravens coach John Harbaugh praised the Australian rookie on Sunday
Ravens coach John Harbaugh echoed his quarterback’s praise for the Australian, noting that Faalele was quick to learn about the demands of playing in a different position.
“In the beginning we had to help the left wing, and we did that a few times, but after that it was not necessary,” he said.
‘Then he’ [Faalele] sort of got a foothold there, and then the running game started to brighten up.
“I thought the offensive line was just playing a great football game. They played really well last week too, so that’s where they’re getting into shape.’